India Tomonkai

About the India Tomonkai

India Tomonkai was established in 2008 by 11 people living near Delhi under the leadership of the first chairperson, Kensaku Konishi (graduated in 1978, School of Education).India Tomonkai increased members to as many as 80 at present (of whom 28 belong to Tokyo branch) Members get together and enjoy many activities; mainly, Christmas parties, New Years parties, regular social gatherings, and golf tournaments.

Golf tournaments include Waseda vs. Keio match held in spring and autumn, regular match with Josuikai (Alumini Association of Hitotsubashi University), etc. About 20 members from Tomonkai and Mitakai (Alumni Association of Keio University), respectively, have participated in the tournaments since September 2008. In the 6th tournament in July 2011, Weseda successfully beat Keio by getting four wins and two losses in total games.
Taro Minamiguchi (Graduated in 1990, School of Law)

Waseda vs. Keio Golf Tournament

The attractive points of India

Curry, turban, religion, Maharaja, poverty, 28 world heritages, cow, elephant, IT, passenger car that costs only 200,000 yen…. You would associate many things with India.

Arterial roads are tightly mixed with automobile, auto-bike, bicycle, auto-rickshaw, and people, while sacred cows enjoy the scenery from the median strips. Behind the shopping malls including high-end designers’ brand, disorderly placed timbers and rubbles, stand workers’ residences, and wander cows, dogs, and pigs. Some people say “India is like Japan of 1950s (the early Showa era) which simultaneously coexists with Japan of 2011”.

India has variety of religions. Its religious distribution is as follows:
Hinduism: 80.5%, Islam: 13.4%, Christianity: 2.3%, Sikhism (which is famous for turban): 1.9%.

Having nine times the size of Japan, and consisted of various ethnicities and cultures, India integrates those factors into one. Therefore, we cannot possibly describe the country with only a few words. There is a theory that “Indian population is officially said to be 1.2 billion but actually has reached to 1.35 billion.” It is amazing, because even the “gap” would surpass the population of Japan!

More than 300 Japanese corporations has entered into NCR (National Capital Region) where the capital Delhi (in which we live) is a hub. Out of 3,700 Japanese residents throughout India, as many as 1,800 converge on the region.

India’s social infrastructure is in the “development” phase. We face blackout, water disruption, water leak, and breakdown of home appliances due to overcurrent very often. Therefore, to prepare for those inconveniences, we use laptop with built-in battery, and reserve pre-washed rice. Recently, however, road infrastructure has been improved. MRTS (Mass Rapid Transit System) constructed by Japanese ODA also opened, which has been rapidly changing people’s lives.

India’s temperature reaches to 50°C in summer (April – June), and decline to 5 or 6°C in winter (December – January). During the period between summer and winter, we have a rainy season called “monsoon” (July – August) and an unwelcome “2nd summer” (September – October). It is true India’s climate is extremely severe, but there are benefits coming from such varied seasons. In summer, we enjoy seeing and tasting an array of fruits on the market place (such as mango).

Regardless of vegetarian or non-vegetarian, Indian eats curry in every meal in principle. Sometimes spices and oils sit heavy on the stomach, but it is so tasty for Japanese, too. Especially, I strongly recommend “chicken tikka” (small pieces of boneless chicken baked in a clay-based oven after marinating in spices and yogurt) which we eat with raw onion serving as refreshment. It goes very well with beer.

We sometimes feel so stressful due to harsh climate and environment, and Indian’s too open-minded character, but we enjoy our lives in India much better than expected.
Koji Araki (Graduated in 1994, School of Political Science and Economics)

Taj Mahal

Sacred cows everywhere

Q: How many people are there in the van?
A: 24!

Message from the Chairperson

India Tomonkai was established in 2008 by the members living in the outskirts of Delhi.Speaking of India, what is your image about the country? Probably, a country of India is so complex that you will not be able to brief it from a single aspect. While the country is the world largest democratic nation and the new rich bracket is being formed amidst its modernization, more than half of the people engage in agriculture. There are still so many people in poverty. India has variety of ethnics, religions, and languages. In fact, there are as many as 22 official languages in India. Under such circumstances, it is very difficult for us to make Japanese way of thinking understood to Indian people, which is repeatedly causing some trouble in communicating with Indian. I hope this Tomonkai network will serve as a place of relief, so that everyone can work hard, smiling at with each other. We want to grow India Tomonkai to help even one person can engage in the activities beneficial to Japan and India, not to mention all of us will work hard in each workplace as a person familiar with India.

The year 2012 is the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Japan and India. If you have a chance to come to India for business trip, etc., please contact us.
We always welcome you in India.
Yasuhiro Kawamura (Graduated in 1981, School of Social Sciences)

Messages from the Members

It has been four years since I started working in India. Four years ago, I happened to meet several Tomonkai members, and had an exciting talk about golf tournament at Korean restaurant (come to think of it, there were only a few Korean restaurants at that time). “Let’s have Waseda vs. Keio golf match!” I remember that was a trigger to gather tournament members. I also remember reaching to people graduated from Keio University and competing who can gather the tournament members most.
India does attract Japanese people’s attentions recently, but we see less Japanese than we see in other Asian countries. That is why I strongly hope our member will increase through Tomonkai’s Christmas parties, golf tournaments, and drinking parties, etc.
Kensaku Konishi (Graduated in 1978, School of Education)

The whole four years has passed since I was transferred to New Delhi in July, 2007. It is the 2nd time for me to be a member of overseas Tomonkai following Singapore Tomonkai (1997 – 2002), which always supports my lonely life outside of Japan. 11 volunteers established Tomonkai here in India. At first, we struggled to draw in members because Waseda graduates were said to be shy and reluctant to act in group. However, now we have over 50 members, and I cannot be more grateful. I get so enthusiastic in every golf tournament with Mitakai or Josuikai, wearing hat with the letter “W” and polo shirt with the word “WASEDA”.
Yasunobu Fukuda (Graduated in 1983, School of Commerce)

Two and half years have passed since I came here in India, which is my 1st overseas assignment. Living and working in India is hard, and the events I can participate in with Tomonkai members is one of my pleasures, because India has few leisure and entertainment. It is the very personal note but my 1st baby was born last year. I came to India when he was only 10 month old.
In a week after arrival, he was hospitalized. The hospital was familiar to foreigners, but I saw a hospital staff sharpening a knife with the hospital wall! I was taken aback by Indian’s innocence to hygiene, though I’ve heard a rumor of it before. My son is full of pep today, and he, my wife, and I are enjoying Indian life a lot.
Taketsugu Katsumata (Graduated in 2002, School of Political Science and Economics)

I started working in Southeast Asia in 1992. After working in four Asian countries, I have been working here in India since July 2009. I stay in India alone, and I always rest assured and feel at ease with Japanese expats wherever I go. It goes without saying that I felt closer to Tomonkai members as soon as I met them. I have savored the significance of meaning in “dousou” (alumni) in five Asian countries. Especially, in India Tomonkai, I am so pleased to enjoy the same enthusiasm as I had in my university days. I frequently participated in Waseda vs. Keio golf tournaments held in each country. I won the whole matches of the three tournaments which I participated in for the past two years after I was transferred to India! I am the oldest member of Tomonkai, so India may be the last overseas assignment for me. I hope I will be able to go back to Japan with a memory of golf tournament victory, not a memory of defeat. I also want to cherish forever the intimacy and coziness derived from the word “dousou”.
Masaaki Doi (Graduated in 1967, School of Education)

Winning Reception of the 6th Waseda vs. Keio Golf Tournament (At the chairperson Kawamura’s house)

List of Overseas Branches/
Overseas Tomonkai/
Overseas Tomonkai
Japanese Branches

Overseas Branches
Alumni Association in China / Alumni Association in Korea / Alumni Association in Taiwan
Overseas Tomonkai
Bangalore Tomonkai / Bangkok Tomonkai / Beijing Tomonkai / Cambodia Tomonkai /
Dalian Tomonkai / Hanoi Tomonkai / Hong Kong Tomonkai / India Tomonkai /
Jakarta Tomonkai / Kanan (South China) Tomonkai / Malaysia Tomonkai / Manila Tomonkai / Mumbai Tomonkai / Myanmar Tomonkai / Saigon Tomonkai / Seoul Tomonkai / Shanghai Tomonkai / Singapore Tomonkai / Suzhou Tomonkai / Taipei Tomonkai / Ulan Bator Tomonkai
Brisbane Tomonkai / Melbourne Tomonkai / Perth Tomonkai / Sydney Tomonkai
North America
Boston Tomonkai / Chicago Tomonkai / Georgia Tomonkai / Hawaii Tomonkai / Los Angeles Tomonkai / Michigan Tomonkai / New York Tomonkai / San Francisco Tomonkai / Seattle Tomonkai / Toronto Tomonkai / Vancouver Tomonkai / Greater Washington Tomonkai
Central and South America
Brazil Tomonkai / Chile Tomonkai / Lima Tomonkai / Mexico Tomonkai
Belgium Tomonkai / Berlin Tomonkai / Denmark Tomonkai / Dusseldorf Tomonkai /
Frankfurt Tomonkai / Geneva Tomonkai / Moscow Tomonkai / Netherlands Tomonkai / Paris Tomonkai / Stockholm Tomonkai / UK Tomonkai
Middle East
Abu Dhabi Tomonkai / Dubai Tomonkai / Qatar Tomonkai / Tehran Tomonkai
Egypt Tomonkai / Johannesburg Tomonkai / Kenya Tomonkai
Overseas Tomonkai Japanese Branches
Bangkok Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Beijing Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Dusseldorf Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Gaoxiong Tomonkai Alumni Association / Hanoi Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Jakarta Tomonkai Alumni Association / Los Angeles Tomonkai Japan / New York Tomonkai Tokyo Branch /
Paris Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Saigon Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Shanghai Tomonkai Tokyo Branch / Singapore Tomonkai Japanese Branch / Tokyo Brazil Tomonkai / Tokyo Hong Kong Tomonkai / Tokyo Melbourne Tomonkai / UK Tomonkai Tokyo Branch